Studies have shown that lockdown has provided Mother Nature with the chance to begin healing herself from destructive human behaviours. We, too, can use this time to begin making small but impactful changes to the way we live. Here are some tips on how to use the lockdown to make a positive change.
Get into walking
So many of us drive short distances, whether it’s the drop the kids off at school in the morning to nipping to the local supermarket that’s within walking distance, that it’s become a habit that can be hard to shake. But we’re all aware of the negative impact driving has on the planet and by switching out even just a few of those activities for walking instead, it can have a big impact on your carbon footprint.
Grow your own vegetables
Gardening is something that a lot of us put off due to a lack of time, but with the lockdown forcing us to slow down and adopt a slower pace of life, there’s never been a better time to develop your green thumb.
There are many benefits to growing your own vegetables, not just in terms of diversifying your diet and eating healthier but also for your wellbeing – just two hours a week outside can improve your mental health. Even if you have a small space or a balcony, you can still start growing things like herbs or tomatoes which don’t require much space and are easy to get started with.
Invest in cleaner energy sources
The pandemic has given us the chance to reflect on our practices and think about how life after lockdown might be different. One of the ways we can champion a greener lifestyle is by switching to cleaner energy sources – it’s not only better for the planet but it’s easier than ever to make the switch from the comfort of your home.
Solar panel technology has evolved significantly over the years and there are panels to suit all different types of roofing. Geo Green Power, a renewable energy installation company, state that “a system will typically cost anywhere between £4,000 and £8,500 – although this can vary depending on the size of your property and the type of installation you are interested in”. Investing in clean energy isn’t just better for the planet but it can also save you money over time too.
Embrace working from home
You might be surprised to learn that working from home can actually be one way of embracing a greener lifestyle. From cutting out your daily commute to scaling back your stationery or energy use, there are numerous ways that you can use remote working during lockdown as a way of helping the planet.
Take your lunch each day, for example – while working from home, you’re avoiding disposable lunch containers and plastic waste by cooking in your own kitchen. By working remotely during the lockdown, you’ll find that there are several ways that you’re able to eliminate unnecessary waste and pollution from the daily grind.
Switching to a plant-based diet, either full-time or even just a couple of days a week can have a huge environmental impact. Going vegan saves around 4,200 litres of water and 9.1kg of carbon dioxide per day – this is because agricultural farming is incredibly water and land-intensive.
So, why not use the lockdown to experiment with new recipes, such as dahls, veggie-based stews or vegan desserts? You might be surprised by how delicious plant-based cooking can be, plus you’ll be contributing towards a cleaner planet.
Opt for a plastic-free lifestyle
From disposable coffee cups on your morning commute to plastic water bottles, there are many areas of our lives where we gravitate towards plastic options for convenience. But in lockdown, we don’t have to use these disposable items which will cut down enormously on the amount of waste being produced.
And once lockdown is over, this is something that you can continue to maintain – use a refillable water bottle, for example, or carry a reusable coffee cup with you on your morning commute to cut down on the number of coffee cups you use each week. These small changes have a massive impact on the planet and are also cost-saving measures for you too.
Lockdown has been difficult for many of us to get used to, but it has also allowed us to take stock of our lives and tackle those lifestyle changes we have been putting off. From reducing food waste and eating plant-based to growing your own food and switching to cleaner energy sources, there are various ways you can use this time to adopt a more environmentally-friendly way of living.